——访国际大会与会议协会（ICCA）第一副主席法国巴黎展览馆集团（Viparis） 销售副执行总监 Marta Gomes
疫情持续影响全球会展业。国际大会与会议协会（ICCA）第一副主席Marta Gomes女士在接受《会议》杂志专访时表示，她仍然看好未来国际会议市场的恢复形势，特别是中国市场，相信也会在聚焦本地和国内市场的同时，加快对国际市场的开放程度。此外，2024年第33届夏季奥林匹克运动会将在巴黎举办，Marta Gomes也认为这将为巴黎会展带来更多机遇，作为法国巴黎展览馆集团（Viparis） 的销售副执行总监，她也表示，将会与中国的更多场馆进行沟通和互动，共同面对当前和未来的挑战。
M：2024年，第33届夏季奥林匹克运动会（Games of the XXXIII Olympics）将在巴黎举办，您认为2024年将会为巴黎的会议展览业带来怎样的利好发展机遇？
Marta Gomes：Physical events are worth the investment. 2024 Olympics creates new opportunities
Interview with Marta Gomes，Deputy Executive Director of Sales Division of Viparis，1st Vice President of ICCA
COVID-19 continues to affect the global events industry. Marta Gomes, First Vice President of the International Congress and Conference Association (ICCA), said in an interview with Meetings China that she is still optimistic about the recovery of the international conference market in the future, especially the Chinese market. She believes that China will accelerate its opening to the international market while focusing on the local and domestic market. In addition, the 33rd Summer Olympic Games will be held in Paris in 2024. Marta Gomes also believes that this will bring more opportunities for Paris events industry. As the deputy executive director of sales of Viparis, she also said that she will communicate and interact with more venues in China. To face current and future challenges together.
MeetingsChina：According to the statistics by ICCA, international conference market has been impacted severely by COVID-19 from 2019 to 2022. Now the international conference market is looking toward recovery. Would you please share your insights about the future recovery of international conferences?
Marta Gomes ：The global spread of COVID-19 pandemic and the measures taken to combat it, such as travel restrictions, closed borders and gathering bans, led to cancellations of many conferences, exhibitions, meetings and workshops. It also forced communities to identify new ways of exchanging and transferring the knowledge by developing virtual and online formats.
However, organisers and attendees quickly realized that a conference isn’t only about exchanging knowledge and content, but that networking and interaction with other delegates are an important component of attending events. In-person events drive the kinds of unplanned encounters which are conducive to creating collaborations and building communities: travel to events is worth the investment.
This is reflected in the events being held in our venues this year, and discussions I’ve had with other destinations across the world are similar: there is a strong desire to organise and attend in person gatherings, whether they are conferences, exhibitions or corporate events. Venues in many parts of the world are hosting as many or more events in 2022 than they did in 2019, with attendance levels that are higher than expected. The most successful events are those who are adapting to the new attendee expectations and rethinking their event design and purpose.
MeetingsChina：As one of the largest conference and exhibition venue management groups in France, Viparis has unique experience and expertise on operating and managing venues and special events facilities. Can you give some suggestions to the venues while the business events were severely impacted, and are gradually recovering?
Marta Gomes ：2020 and 2021 were very difficult years for us as for venues around the world. Our revenues were severely impacted, our staff furloughed and we took measures to reduce costs wherever possible. While dealing with the crisis, it was also important for us to have people in our teams thinking about and preparing for the future. We worked with our customers, partners and stakeholders to imagine what would be the needs of organisers, exhibitors and attendees coming back to our venues. Our new solutions focused on 4 areas:
Safety – putting in place the necessary safety protocols to welcome audiences safely in our venues, and make them feel comfortable attending events
Digital – investing in capabilities to allow for augmented reality events, where speakers and participants don’t necessarily have to be onsite, and where content can be shared also after the event and create year-round engagement
Community & Experience – connecting more closely with our local communities, and creating novel cultural and immersive experiences to attract visitors from the city and offer delegates an extra reason to visit
Sustainability – working towards net zero carbon in our venues, and offering customized solutions to organise more sustainable events that leave a lasting social impact on the destination.
MeetingsChina：In 2024, Paris will host the Games of the XXXIII Olympiad and welcome athletes and visitors across the world. Many venues of Viparis will serve for Paris 2024 Summer Olympics as the competition venues and the press center, so what new opportunities will the Olympics Games bring for Viparis and the events industry in Paris?
Marta Gomes ：We are proud and excited to host the next Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris in 2024. The Paris 2024 Games will be an ambitious and spectacular celebration that champions economic, social and environmental responsibility. Paris 2024 positioned legacy and sustainability at the heart of its project to benefit the host regions, open up opportunities for local businesses, have half the carbon footprint of previous editions, embrace circular economy principles, increase the reach of sport in people’s lives, and promote education, engagement, inclusion, equality and environmental transformation through sport.
The events industry in Paris will greatly benefit as well:
Better transport: Paris is undergoing major investments which will improve accessibility to venues: a metro line to Orly airport opening for the games; a new tram and suburban train to Palais des Congrès; better accessibility to venues in the north of Paris
Sustainability: Paris 2024 aims to organise the most sustainable games ever, and plans to make its sustainable model of organising major events reproducible internationally and to share it with other international organisers
Job creation, upskilling and inclusion: Paris 2024 wants to encourage local employment and skills improvement, particularly for the most disadvantaged, and help small business and social enterprises. This will also impact the events ecosystem creating opportunities for talent development and local companies.
MeetingsChina：More and more Chinese enterprises have joined ICCA community. What do you think about the development of the conference and exhibition markets in China?
Marta Gomes ：The events market in China saw a constant growth in the last 10 years, as shown by the ICCA statistics with a steady growth over the 2010-2019 period, and many new members joining and becoming active in our community. There are some positive signs of travel restrictions lifting, necessary for restarting to host international events in China. We have seen in other regions of the world that recovery can be quite fast, focusing first on local and national markets before expanding back to international.
MeetingsChina：How is the plan of Viparis to interact and cooperate with China’s venues in the future?
Marta Gomes ：For us, as for many companies in the ICCA community around the world, international collaboration and knowledge sharing is an important part of why we become a member. China has invested heavily in building the largest and most modern venues, this expertise can be shared with cities and venue operators around the world. There is a lot of value in being able to have open conversations and sharing ideas and solutions to current and future challenges.